Across the nation, the rate of deaths from falls among those 65 and older increased 31 percent from 2007 to 2016 — from about 18,000 to nearly 30,000, researchers found.
“If deaths from falls continue to increase at the same rate, the U.S. can expect 59,000 older adults will die because of a fall in 2030,” said lead researcher Elizabeth Burns. She’s a health scientist at the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, which is part of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Falls are the leading cause of both fatal and nonfatal injuries among adults aged 65 and older, she added. (more)
Falling can be caused by many factors:
* Internal factors such as slowed reflexes, balance disorders, low blood pressure, visual deficits, etc.
* External factors such as poor lighting, poor room layout, the effects of medications.
What can be done?
* Make an assessment of the risk you have by answering the questions below:
* Add up your score on a separate paper or print this.
* Read information listed at bottom of this page on prevention.
0-5 = Low Risk
6-8= Moderate Risk
8+ = High Risk
* Tell your doctor about any falls you have taken.
* Talk with your doctor and pharmacist about medications you take.
* Inspect your home for any safety problems such as lighting, flooring, and furniture.
* Make your home safer by installing night lights, bathroom grab bars and slip-resistant floors.
* In addition to strength exercising certain exercises — yoga, tai chi, and trying to balance on one leg with your eyes closed — can help improve balance.
American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons
National Athletic Trainers’ Association
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – Injury
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